Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 1/8/13
The Bruins would seem to be at an advantage as a lockout-shortened NHL season approaches. For starters, the Black and Gold were one of the best-represented NHL teams in Europe, with 11 members of the team opting to wait out parts of the lockout by playing in Europe. While no one will mistake European action for the NHL, there’s no denying the advantages of staying in game shape while the lockout dragged on. The Bruins have to hope that pays off in a short sprint toward the playoffs. The B’s also have someone in their organization who knows all about playing a shortened season. Bruins president Cam Neely was still playing in 1995 when another lockout cost the league half a season. Neely scored 27 goals and added 14 asssists in the 48-game season for Boston during that shortened season. Neely knows that there will be added significance to regular season games, with two points meaning even more than usual night in and night out. “As a player you usually think, ‘We’ve got 82 games and you’re bound to have some ups and downs and mental lapses,’” he explained to the Boston Herald. “But you just couldn’t afford any of those when you were looking at 48 games. “It was like a sprint to the playoffs. You couldn’t afford to go through a bad stretch. Every game mattered.” The Bruins are a veteran team that should know that to begin with, but it’s unlikely Neely will let them forget that. Remembering that, along with a large core of the roster whose games were sharpened overseas could have the Bruins poised for success. “I don’t want to come out and say we’re set up better, but it is beneficial for us that a number of our players have been playing in Europe and actually playing very well,” Neely told the Herald. “We had both goaltenders playing over there at some point, which is a big plus. So, yeah, from that perspective of having such a large number of guys who’ve been playing in games, it is certainly helpful.” Some of the Bruins’ most important players stayed sharp in Europe with forwards Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin, defensemen Zdeno Chara and Andrew Ference, and goalie Tuukka Rask all spending some time — and enjoying success — while playing overseas. And perhaps most importantly, all of those players return to Boston for the season fully healthy.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Country club might be too exclusive for Brady, Gisele

Reports: Jerry DiPoto likely out as Angels GM

Report: Mike Richards incident involved oxycodone

Report: Spurs, Leonard working on max deal

Ex-Cowboy indicted on sexual assault charges

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Kevin Love to meet with Lakers

Carli Lloyd sends USWNT to World Cup final

Auburn, Oregon to open 2019 season at AT&T Stadium

Butler can’t sign one-year contract unless it’s with Bulls

DeAndre Jordan wants 4-year deal, bigger offensive role

Kings reportedly looking into viability of firing Karl

Report: Pelicans sign Davis to five-year, $145M extension

Rex Ryan more excited about Taylor than Cassel?

Jose Aldo out of UFC 189, replaced by Chad Mendes

Landon Donovan takes shot at Jurgen Klinsmann

Hope Solo admits to using stalling tactics on penalty kick

Scottie Pippen: ‘I was LeBron James before LeBron James’

Feud between Scioscia and Dipoto makes Angels fascinating case study

WATCH: Jim Harbaugh throws out first pitch at Tigers game

MLB’s All-Star roster will now announced be over two days

Blackhawks trade Brandon Saad to the Blue Jackets

Blatter won’t attend World Cup final due to ‘personal reasons’

Sharks have found their starting goalie by acquiring Jones

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Lloyd sends USWNT to World Cup final

Selecting the 2015 AL All-Stars

NBA Draft grades: Eastern Conference

Under the radar NBA free agents

Michael Sam, boyfriend broke up?

Mickelson linked to money laundering?

Reminiscing on 'Love & Basketball' 15 years later

Selecting the 2015 NL All-Stars

The Sixers' latest horde

Projected landing spots for NBA's top free agents

MLB changes format for Home Run Derby

Revis to work out with Patriots DBs

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.